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Life Without Gabriella Ferri (2008)

Original title: Elu ilma Gabriella Ferrita

Animation Duration 43:45


Priit Pärn

Some time ago I was exploring the similarities between animation and mythology. Not in genres or topics, but in the language. I found really strong connections, for example in mythological age the space and time were not continuous and animation is the medium that can also work with this non-continuous space and time. And I found a lot of examples of this in your films.
Priit: All animation feature films from Disney etc. are made by the laws of live-action films. And it’s mainly about time; they act like in a live-action film. I also write the scripts from which it is possible to make a live-action film. But, before the animation I have to rewrite it. In my animation the time is not live-action time anymore. It’s compressed and is using a language of short animation. It’s kind of a strange combination. I think nobody from critics understood this so far, while this is probably one of the most specific things in my films.
Olga: We have read the Gunter Grass’s The Dog’s Years. The story begins in “normal” time, but later in some chapters he changes the time to compressed one. We used exactly the same in Gabriella. The scene when man is climbing on the wall is really strongly compressed. And it’s true that no critic wrote about it yet.
Priit: But we actually do not have any critics. In Estonia there is almost nobody who could write about your film so that it would interest you. It’s good even if somebody writes something. Mainly it’s just description what’s happening.
Could you tell something more about the metaphorical character and visual symbolism of your films?
Priit: I really do not like the word symbol; there are no symbols in my films. If there’s sun rising at the end of film it is symbol that everything will be good. I do not like such kind of stuff. I just try to tell strange stories. In Gabriella Ferri for example they are playing erotic game in a kitchen. How to play this in some strange way? Maybe to have the third element, a fish in the kitchen… catching fish, touching fish, a feeling of fish… But the fish is not a symbol. Even if you understood that the fish is symbol of something, so what? Film has to act through emotion.
Olga: It’s a beauty of poetry, beauty of animation and of art. Everyone can read it in his own way. I agree that this kind of expression is a language that the mass audience doesn’t understand. But I’m sure it’s possible to teach it. Actual state is deeply connected to the mass media I think. You have to be the sheep among the other sheep.

Ivana Laučíková
HFJ Priit Pärn - Homo Felix, http://homofelixjournal.com/onlinefulltexts/priit-parn (06.06.2014).

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